Stoke City 1-5 Nottingham Forest (FA Women’s National League North) 03.12.23
Carly Davies’ Nottingham Forest side kept up the pressure on the top two in the FA Women’s National League Northern Premier on Sunday afternoon, easing to a comfortable, 5-1 win, away to Stoke City.
Sitting third in the table, victory for the Reds sees them five points behind second place Burnley, and seven behind new leaders, Newcastle United, the Lady Mags having won 1-0 at home to West Bromwich Albion.
Forest meanwhile, they picked up their sixth league win in nine outings when, following a tight, opening forty-five, opened proceedings up in the second to cruise home.
It was 1-1 inside ten minutes, the game bursting to life early on when Sophie Domingo and Charlotte Greengrass combined well, the latter feeding the ball through to Louanne Worsey who fired home the opener on six; just three minutes later and the hosts were level.
Having initially been fouled, Heidi Logan stepped up to put the resultant penalty, the first of the afternoon, into Emily Batty’s bottom corner, for her tenth of the season; the score stayed that way, somehow, until just before the interval.
Both sides created chances, Worsey denied her second of the game after twenty minutes when missing at the near post before Batty prevented the hosts from taking the lead with a great save around the half hour.
Minutes before the break though and Forest regained the lead when they were awarded a penalty also, Holly Manders firing home from twelve yards out for a 2-1 interval lead.
A battling start to the second period eventually saw the visiting Reds add a third goal after Freya Thomas had picked out Sophie Domingo and the number seven finished well on the hour; that third soon became a fourth, just nine minutes later, Manders bagging her second of the game, and ninth of the season when she lobbed the home shot-stopper from distance.
After a handful of changes from Davies the Reds completed the rout inside the final ten minutes, Natalie Johnson getting in on the act with their fifth of the afternoon; a dangerous free-kick was played into the box by Mollie Green, it reaching Johnson at the far post who netted from a tight angle to cap a fine, 5-1 success.
As we head towards the winter break Nottingham Forest’s next match is a home game, at Grange Park, they welcoming Boldmere St. Michaels in the next round of the Women’s FA Cup, on Sunday 10 December.
Forest: Emily Batty, Lyndsey Harkin, Natalie Johnson, Sophie Domingo, Holly Manders (Niamh Reynolds, 79), Louanne Worsey, Mollie Green (Olivia Cook, 82), Freya Thomas, Becky Anderson, Charlotte Greengrass (Mai Moncaster, 72), Ella Haughey (Chloe Dixon, 79).
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @NFFCWomen celebrations in the snow for Forest at Stoke.